Maple Leafs Notes: Roberts, Cujo Returning, Free Agent Pick-'em Game!

Derek HarmsworthSenior Writer IJune 26, 2008

Roberts, Joseph Returning To Toronto?

David Shoalts of the Globe and Mail is reporting this morning that both Gary Roberts and Curtis Joseph will be interested in returning to Toronto this summer, and will likely make sales pitches to Cliff Fletcher on or after July 1st. While at first it seems like this would detract from a rebuild, it is probably anything but. Sure, Roberts and Joseph are up their in age.
With all due respect, to both of them, this could be their last year of their playing career. And there are benefits to them playing with this team next year. Roberts is a leader, both on and off the ice. He is a marvel to young teammates and the perfect motivational figure to young players. He sets the bar to where guys want, and need to be physically.

Joseph somewhat reinvented himself last year with solid play in Calgary during the second half of the season. Because of Justin Pogge being likely a year away, the Maple Leafs are just looking for someone who can fill the net for about 20 games this year. Joseph could easily be that guy.

Of course, there is benefits to them playing for this team that go beyond next year as well. Roberts would make a fantastic strength and conditioning coach, or some type of player development coach. You would assume if he comes to Toronto this would likely be his final playing year.
After that, he would feel quite comfortable sliding in a coaching role with familiar faces like Cliff Fletcher, David Coates, Joe Nieuwendyk, and Doug Gilmour. Joseph, well, you know the Maple Leafs are looking for a goalie coach these days. I am not sure if that is something Joseph would like to do post playing career, but it is an intriguing option.

Free Agent Pick-'Em

So, I love hockey pools. Regular season, playoffs, heck one time I even did an Entry Draft prediction pool. Anyways, this year, I am debuting the Free Agent Pick-'Em game here on Bleacher Report. Wanna enter? Here's how. All you have to do is pick twelve free agents, and predict what team they will land with.

Pick ten free agents from the following list, plus two "wild cards" who aren't on the list. You will receive a point for every player you have corrected. And yes, The Winner will receive a very special prize!

1.    Marion Hossa
2.    Mats Sundin
3.    Joe Sakic
4.    Brian Campbell
5.    Kristian Huselius
6.    Jaromir Jagr
7.    Cristobal Huet
8.    Brian Rolston
9.    Wade Redden
10.    Mark Streit
11.    Ryan Malone
12.    Pavol Demitra
13.    Peter Forsberg
14.    Brooks Orpik
15.    Ron Hainsey
16.    Brenden Shanahan
17.    Markus Naslund
18.    John-Michael Liles
19.    Jose Theordore
20.    Miroslav Satan
21.    Darcy Tucker
22.    Rob Blake
23.    Sean Avery
24.    Adam Foote
25.    Sergei Fedorov
26.    Mike Green
27.    Olaf Kolzig
28.    Brenden Morrison
29.    Brad Stuart
30.    Michael Ryder

There are two ways to enter! You can send your picks to my email or you can type them up on my profile page. Entry for deadline is Sunday night at Midnight, I will post everyone’s predictions this upcoming Monday, and then the frenzy will begin on Tuesday! Good luck to all who enter.

Maple Leafs Notes Format Changes
I have noticed, and I am sure you have to, that for the most part, Maple Leafs Notes has become monotonous lately. A little, dry. While I do a good news reporting breaking news, and keeping everyone up to date, I do it as if I am a robot. I apologize for that, and from now on not only will Maple Leafs Notes be informative, it will be exciting to read.  

It will feature more interactive features, give aways, and more of my personal opinions. After all, BR is about the true opinions of us sports fans, it's time I begin exercising that right once again. Speaking of my opinion (which sometimes rambles forever I know) I would like to remind everyone that my very popular game recap and thoughts posts will be returning this fall when the Maple Leafs take the ice.

Game thoughts and recaps will be available after every single Maple Leafs game, including the pre season.


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